New Zealander Leads GlobalWave Goodbye to Nuclear Weapons
22 April 2015
A public action to ‘wave goodbye to nuclear weapons’ will sweep around the world on April 26-27 as governments gather at the United Nations in New York for four weeks of nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament deliberations.
Global Wave 2015, initiated by New Zealand peace activist Alyn Ware, will involve a simple public action in cities around the world undertaken in a timed fashion over 24 hours just before the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference begins in New York. Representatives of the 188 States Parties to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), including most of the nuclear-armed States and their allies, will be meeting for the 5-yearly review of the treaty – and to make decisions on how best to implement the treaty goals to prevent nuclear proliferation and to achieve nuclear disarmament.
‘Nuclear weapons stimulate conflicts, provide an incentive for proliferation and pose an unacceptable risk of being used in wartime or by accident or by terrorists.’ says Mr Ware, International Representative for the New Zealand Peace Foundation who was recently nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for his nuclear disarmament work. ‘It’s time for humanity to abolish these instruments of annihilation. It’s time to wave goodbye to nuclear weapons.’
Thousands of activists will converge at the United Nations to lobby government representatives over the 4 weeks of deliberations, calling on them to commence negotiations to prohibit and eliminate nuclear weapons according to a time-bound framework. Global Wave 2015 will mobilise public globally to support this call by organising wave actions in their own locations. Global Wave will start at an international peace rally in New York on April 26 and then sweep around the world in 24 hours proceeding through each time zone every hour. It will return to New York on April 27 for the opening of the NPT Review Conference. The action will engage parliamentarians, mayors, religious leaders, youth, environmentalists, human rights activists, sports clubs, celebrities and other representatives of civil society. The action in some places will be small and symbolic – in other places it will be larger and more celebratory.
‘The Peace Foundation is excited to be involved in the Global Wave 2015, taking the role of the national co-ordinator for New Zealand,’ says Peace Foundation Acting General Manager Caroline Ongleo-Calub. ‘We strongly believe that the abolition of nuclear weapons is a crucial step towards a stable peaceful environment. With our engagement in this campaign we join people from around the world to take a stand against nuclear weapons.’
The civil society action is being complemented by a case lodged by the Marshall Islands in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) against the nuclear-armed States on their failure to implement their nuclear disarmament obligation. The Peace Foundation is calling on New Zealand to intervene in this case in support of the Marshall Islands.
‘New Zealand took an active role in the 1996 ICJ case that affirmed an unconditional obligation of all States to negotiate for the complete prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons,’ says Mr Ware who served as the United Nations-based non-governmental coordinator for the 1996 case. ‘If one believes in the rule of law, if one believes in our anti-nuclear legislation, then we should be there in court with our Pacific neighbour to protect our world and future generations from the nuclear threat.’
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